Zero Active COVID19 Cases in Belize

by McNab Editorial Team

Approximately 6 weeks after reporting its first COVID-19 infection, Belize officially confirms there are no active coronavirus cases. As of 5:00PM local time today, May 5, 2020, the remaining 2 active cases in Belize have fully recovered. Belize registered 2 deaths from COVID-19 and 18 total cases, with April 13 being the last reported spike (+4 cases). Neighboring countries like Guatemala and Mexico continue to report new cases, so Belize must continue to exercise all preventative measures.

Flattening the Curve

In addition to the State of Emergency being extended a further 60 days, Belize imposed a new Statutory Instrument, SI65, that eases lockdown restrictions. Both new measures are effective 1 May, 2020. Businesses may slowly be re-opening across the country, but Belizeans must still stay home where possible. The use of face masks in public have also been made mandatory, along with a minimum 6-feet of social distance when in public. The new requirements are bound to make face masks an inescapable sight in Belize for the foreseeable future. Additionally, they could also introduce a level of mutual obligation and civic duty. Failure to do so carries a hefty fine at $5,000 BZD. This zero tolerance approach aims for aggressive management of no new cases.

Belize’s COVID-19 Timeline

Belize confirmed its first case of coronavirus on March 23, nearly 2 months after the United States confirmed its first infection. On March 30, when the country had 3 cases, the Government of Belize announced a national state of emergency for 30 days. A few days later, Belize’s borders were closed even to Belizean nationals seeking entry. Though then-considered extreme, this decision was a turning point to avoid community spread from imported cases. Nationals may only enter the country under a medical emergency, while borders remain closed for exiting. However, exits for non-nationals are possible through various repatriation flights.
More than 241,000 people have died from COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus, while some 3.3 million infections have been confirmed in at least 187 countries and territories. Fortunately, more than one million people have recovered to date.

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